tv Charlie Rose Bloomberg September 24, 2014 8:00pm-9:01pm EDT
in as egypt's six present -- president. he was a permanent member of the muslim browser head -- brotherhood. he urged egypt since to be ready for a hard work phase. egypt faces no shortage of challenges. el-sisi addressed the challenge of terrorism in a speech. >> egypt's solution is to recognize the problem. move towards solving it and overcoming it. by the will of god, and by god alone, and through you egyptians, all the egyptians and all the loyal and honorable citizens, we will fulfill the hope that we basically look
towards and upon. >> president el-sisi is in new york. i sat down with him for a conversation about egypt and its role in the region. terrorism and more. >> thank you for doing this. welcome to new york. you are here for the united nations general assembly. what do you hope to publish? -- accomplish? it is important to introduce egypt to the world. events egypt underwent in the last two years, let me say, almost the last three years, very important for the people to see and hear egypt through the egyptians. or through me, in one way or the
other. >> what do you want us to hear? egypt is a pivotal country in the region. it is the bedrock of stability in the area. country tohe first clinch a peace agreement with israel. egypt can play a more influential role. i don't think many countries can undertake the role egypt can do. i believe egypt can work freely with both sides, the israelis and palestinians. egypt enjoys credit ability with both sides. this is one important issue. reach realucceed to peace, we will be able to
achieve a lot in the region. very important for the people to the will ofs now the egyptians. egypt on heard about the 20th of january, 2011. there is another revolution that took place. for the world to know the revolution took place as well at the hands of the egyptians. makegyptians are able to two revolutions in four years, yes. they are capable people. they can make change for a better true to her -- feature for the country. >> what was the second revolution necessary? you had a democratically elected government. >> egyptians felt their country
was approaching dangerous extremism. path thatng into a the egyptians did not want for their country. they wanted freedoms. they wanted democracy. they wanted social justice. they did not want a religious state in the way egypt was approaching. that was the thing that made the egyptians believe the social contract the 20 people -- between the people and the former president on which they voted for two except pluralization and inclusiveness did not happen. they said, no. >> what did he do? dedicated the idea of the
group. among thethe vision egyptians. also, the problems of egypt were monumental. group would beor able to confront all of the problems. it was necessary for all egyptians to work together to overcome the problems. he could not do that. there was not a mechanism in the previous constitution to allow, ton after only one year, impeach the president. to impeachhe people a president that they chose in
the first place. they showed flexibility and for earlyto announce presidential elections, egypt would have been saved a lot of problems. >> was it a coup? >> if the will of the egyptians, 30 million egyptians is seen as i want to say there is one important fact that i want you to know. the fact of the egyptian military making coups is something egypt has passed a long time ago. it was a response for the will of the egyptians. >> what will the muslim brotherhood have to do to be
included again in the political future of israel? of egypt? >> they didn't have to do anything. of announcement on the third ampleas providing opportunity for the full spectrum of the political powers and egypt to reproduce eight. ate.e-particp to putly needed to agree his fate in the elections and be part of the constitutional amendments. there would have been other si to runor mos again for office. and is stillwas work we did -- is still repeated, did they want
participation or confrontation? i am afraid they chose confrontation. if you allow me to complete not with issue is now the government. it is with the egyptians. the a jepson's are the ones who needed to reconcile with -- the ejections are the ones who needed to reconcile. they feel a major part of the have been hurt by the muslim brothers and the practices during the past year. >> their future is what, the mouth of motherhood -- the muslim brotherhood? >> it is the call of the egyptians.
will they denounce violence? will they have the will to apologize to egyptians? will they be ready to participate in the political process with its terms and conditions? the moment we are speaking now, they are resorting to violence. the relationship with the united states and what happened to president mubarak. did it do damage to the u.s.- egyptian relationship? >> absolutely not. never. gyptianstions -- e understand a strategic relationship between the u.s. and egypt. there may be differences in opinion.
this is possible and normal and relations among countries. still, the relation between egypt and the u.s. is stable and strategic. >> aid will continue to flow from the u.s. to egypt? >> out of the question. >> one of the first visits you made was to go to russia? received a aid from saudi arabia and other arab friends. is that a signal you do not need america in the way you have? >> this is a difficult question. we cannot traditions, hold relationships on manipulation. >> was it there? manipulation? relationship is founded on solid grounds, the u.s. has
provided a lot to egypt. if we have aore, difference in opinion, this doesn't mean we forget all the history. >> what are the differences of opinion? i know that, judging the state of affairs in egypt is quite unique. revolution every day in countries around the world. living symptoms of a revolutionary state for four years. this needs to be seen within the right context. >> what do you want from the u.s.? thate the relationship
would be good for egypt. we think that the u.s. should appreciate and understand the circumstances that egypt is living, undergoing. to understand that egypt is keen on providing freedoms, real democracy. we are keen on bringing about the ability. egypt is committed to human rights in egypt. we are very keen and all of this.-- in all of but under difficult circumstances. >> the difficult circumstances are? >> terrorism we are facing in the whole world is seeing. we are having victims on a daily basis in sinai and the rest of the country.
we have been in countering this terrorism for more than a year. >> you mean al qaeda and the sinai?- in the >> these are only names. what we are talking about, jihadists and terrorists that are committing violence. targeting the military. the civil police. the state and institutions. >> there is a threat from isis. isil, islamic state. which do you prefer to call them? to get dragged into reducing countering terrorism that needs a
comprehensive strategy into countering isis or isil. it doesn't water -- matter what name they come under. strategya strategic that is comprehensive and includes ingredients. cultural, economic, military confrontation. also supporting the economic capabilities of a country and reinforcing the role of the moderate religious institutions. >> what is egypt prepared to do today? thatght the terrorism president obama is trying to assimilate against? we have been public for our
support in this matter. perhaps more than a year ago, we started our counterterrorism efforts in sinai and other places in egypt. the military and civil police are exerting efforts to exert protection for egyptians. to deprive terrorism from expanding to the region. >> the military was involved in trying to fight terrorism in libya. along with emirates. andhe egyptian air force -- of the egyptian air force. with a support airstrikes against isis in iraq and syria? -- will be egyptian air force isisrt airstrikes against in iraq and syria? >> do you need the egyptian air force?
>> yes, because the president ke it to be not just americans against muslims. for muslim countries to be engaged in every aspect so it doesn't look like the u.s. is against muslims. he needs that. as an important signal in his judgment. >> true. >> will you support -- [laughter] president? give us a patch is and f-16s and- give us the apaches
f-16s you have been suspending. >> if you get them? before.id it that egypte the fact is in a real and serious confrontation with terrorism. we have long borders with libya. we are taking full responsibility for securing them. there is not side, the capability to secure the borders. enormouserting efforts. military is undertaking a major role in countering terrorism -- the egpytian military is undertaking a major role in countering terrorism.
the symbolism of egyptian support is there. >> it is important to have the coalition support. how you see it working? if there is a reason not to use egyptian forces, what is the reason? the idea is the coalition is formed and we are part of the coalition. the symbolism is their. -- there. with the public announcement that we are part of the coalition. i want to say that when the the size ofred, forces needed to liberate kuwait, that was another thing. minorze of isil is very
compared to the capabilities of the neighboring countries of iraq. turkey, a nato member. compared to the strong abilities of the iraqi army itself. and they can be abilities -- to the capabilities of the gulf states. we have to understand this matter in its context. >> talk about reforming egypt what you need to do? the economy is in a bad place. how do you economy and gain credibility which you need? what reforms are necessary? what rule of law is necessary? what respect for individual rights is necessary? withwould like to start the last part of your question. we are trying with real willingness to uphold the human
rights in egypt. theeed to bear in mind state of affairs that egypt is undergoing. mind that bear in procedures we are undertaking to counterterrorism. it is important to be rest assured we are keen on human rights. i don't want to just come on the media and say good words about human rights, i am also saying it out of our deep belief. we do not tolerate violations of human rights. humaned for redefining rights. instead of reducing it to freedom of expression, it needs
to be more inclusive. human rights should include the education.od quality decent life. a decent place to live. i consider these as important human rights. . am very keen on honoring these in egypt. you said there is a difficult problem in egypt. egyptians now, i'm talking about the ordinary citizens, egyptians are conscious of their problems. the real solution is to admit you have a problem. egyptians understand they have an economic problem that they need to face. two things we need to bear in mind.
accepted excepted -- slashing on the subsidies. something that was not touched by previous governments. >> you received $20 billion from saudi arabia and other gulf countries. a year later, people said they had seen no change as a result of the $20 million. it did not have an impact on the economy. prevented the collapse of the state. briefly, of course you are about circumstances. the almost complete absence of tourism.
fuel to generate electricity. to make cars run. a lot of things had to be funded. this is something we are inteful for our brothers saudi arabia. if this had not happened, egypt would have collapsed. >> therefore, you need more money from arab countries as well as the u.s. in order to avoid an economic collapse? place.we are in a better about how tong now overcome the economic problems. we have objectives. we say that if we succeed in the coming two years to improve the economic status, we can have a
anybody can be criticized in the to anyrom the president state or institution. there is no limitation. this is final. there is no limitation in egypt. we are keen on ensuring that. >> let me set a couple of examples. examples.couple of there was a comedian who came here and created a program similar to john stored here. that was taken off the air. that is not freedom of expression. one example. why was it taken off the air? >> i hope you believe me. we had nothing to do with that at all. >> here is something you do know about. journalist.ra i realize you believe it is in the courts, the judiciary.
john kerry spoke to you about this. i have asked this question often. you shouldn't be imprisoning journalists. they are not a threat to the state. they are in prison in egypt. you could do something about that. why have you not? i will again be honest with you. not been facing such a situation in egypt. of their indictment, with a are innocent or guilty, the best thing was to get them out of the country. arrested, i was
not responsible for the country. i was only the minister of defense. judicial formalities are still in process. any state understands that if anything, any violation on the part of a journalist, no country would like to imprison journalists. countries do not need lengthy debates about having journalists in prison. i hope i am clear and understood. i wish they had not been arrested or even stood in court. >> >> why would -- why don't you do anything about it? >> now i cannot. >> why not? >> this is the hands of the judiciary system. they are in court according to the legal formalities.
i cannot intervene. it doesn't mean i do not want to. i cannot. >> you would like to intervene. you would like to see them not on trial. you disagree with the indictment. you are saying, i can't do anything about it. they should not have been indicted -- >> let me be clear. let me be clear. i'm response will for the words i am saying. i did not wish for these people to be treated that way. have been deported from the country -- but now, they are standing trial. they are in the hands of the egyptian judiciary -- judiciary to make sure we respect the judiciary.
pass judgments on their rulings. determined to uphold the judiciary system. i have always shown respect to the judiciary system. if we want egypt to be as developed and civilized as other countries, no one doubts the judiciary system, then we will have to pay the price of ensuring the independence of it. and not interfering in affairs. >> and what about mr. morsi and mubarak? are they still in the judicial system? >> yes. >> what do they face? >> i don't know. tois the judge who is going give the sentence according to the case. still, the legal formalities are in process.
>> you talk about a new egypt. you are a military man who became president in an election. mubarak is a military men who became vice president and then succeeded and where sadat -- anwar sadat. how are you different than mubarak? >> the circumstances are different. the will of edia jip should -- of the egyptians was the decisive matter. when the injections wanted -- when the egyptians wanted to end political rule, they ended it.
they brought morsi to office. thisthey wanted to stop administration, they revolted against it. >> how will your presidency be different than mubarak? how you see yourself as different than him? how do you see your vision of egypt as different than him? many people think this is a return to something rather than a beginning of something. you shouldn't jump to conclusions and pass early judgments. >> what does that mean? egypt was facing extreme dangers.
if you want a real answer, i was called in to save egypt from failure. >> called in by whom? >> the people. you need to visit egypt and talk to the people. >> i know the popular support against morsi. i understand that. i also understand that many people, including the u.s., raised questions and said what should have taken place is government should have been voted out of office, not thrown out of office. not arrested. not facing severe criminal penalties. that raised questions. you have to speak to the questions as you try to restore a vision of egypt that you believe reflects egypt.
i repeat what i said earlier it was not a mechanism to impeach our president. now if the egyptians want to take action according to the new thetitution, to terminate term of presidency before completion, now they can with the impeachment mechanism. the previous constitution did not have that mechanism. the only way to do that was through protesting and resorting to aggressive actions. >> the interesting thing about you is you were a military man.
you becamer square, the defense minister. now i sit here and you are the president of the country. >> we believe in fate and destiny. know there is, we thatine providence controls many things in our lives. one can draw the story of the life from the beginning to end. >> this was not sure choice. -- not your choice. it was fate, destiny. >> yes. >> the destiny to do what? [laughter] get into, now we
will get into a debate. i hope my role is to protect egypt and the egyptians. to achieve the hopes of egypt and the egyptians. for a free country. a stable country. with good economic circumstances. appropriate for the egyptians. that the egyptians enjoy freedom, real freedom. in democratic practices. to provide and create jobs for millions of young people who are unemployed. we are talking about the ofnciples of the 25th
january revolution. freedom, and social justice. those,cceed in attaining i believe i will have obtained all the aims and hopes i want people.ountry and my >> what you say to those supporters of the muslim brotherhood? opinion ofrefuse the the other. i hope their support does not change into violence. this does not -- will not be in the interest of anybody. >> these are people -- you actually believe they are terrorists. brotherhood. >> the problem is in the mindset.
structure oftal this kind that causes the problem. >> what do you mean? those who adopt this ideology are ready to resort to violence in order to obtain objectives. >> fluffy ask you about other players middle east. let me ask you about other players middle east.. hamas. there is a border with gaza. will you open the border? >> there are two crossings. you cannot close the crossings except for security reasons. it is vulnerable to terrorist activities. and we dealt with tunnels,
crossing is allowed through the formal crossing. thes forward -- what is anp forward to achieving whichi palestinian peace everybody believes is essential? head ofjudgment, as the a powerful country with huge role ine, who played a the gaza strip, the gaza war. what is necessary? haveat is necessary is to real will on all our parts.
just solution for the palestinian issue. to establish a palestinian state on the occupied territory of 1967 with real guarantees to the israelis and palestinians. ae first step is to achieve lasting peace -- cease-fire. allow humanitarian relief to get into the strip in order to mitigate the ramifications of the conflict. and the devastation they saw during the past time. and then to build on, through negotiation, the strong political will -- we can build the piece we are talking about and desiring.
experience is there and can be repeated. the egyptian-israeli peace was a decisive factor enabling egypt to launch its initiative and talk with the israelis. they would accept the age of -- initiative without conditions. be able to receive cease-fire and stopping the bloodshed for both sides. >> the arab spring came. senseayed a role by in a allowing the revolution to go forward. not putting soldiers in the streets.
the revolution that was taking place. you saw the revolution indonesia. -- in tunisia. the effort for revolution in syria. the devastating impact of a revolution, which succeeded and then seems to have failed in libya. what is the outline of a new middle east? return tot is a strong leaders. you are one that they suggest. is that it? is that the future? where is democracy? separation of religion from government? what is the threat to the new middle east?
early to delineate the future of the middle east. the events that took place over the last three years were momentous. they were interrelated. say, i want to say, was nato's mission in libya accomplished? the revolution did not fade. there is the will of the libyans. to thell is captive armored militias in the absence of a national army and stable government. national police forces.
i believe the missions should have been completed by assembling the weapons that are now in the hands of the militias. building the capacities of the military and police. founding a strong, national government. this did not happen. i don't want you to say that the libyan revolution failed. the libyans are great people. they have a will. >> i say succeeded but then collapsed. ensure itsto continuous success by preventing the flow of weapons into libya. supporting the legitimate parliament. to reach are effort political solution. >> many people look -- i want
your opinion on this -- they look at the middle east and say, it is simply a battle between -- within islam. it is a conflict between sunni and shia. is that true? is that a large part of the conflict today? >> we need to pay attention to the fact that this area has been there, with the same structure, without having this conflict before. evidence of asee conflict that has shia-sunni dimensions. look at how the parties are. iran, supporting an iraqi
government that is shia. iran supports hezbollah. iran supports hamas. some say the battle in the middle east is a powerful conflict between saudi arabia and not egypt that iran -- but iran on the other hand. >> i want to say that the united states has a great opportunity to achieve stability in the region. the u.s. has leverage, influence, and a big capabilities. reassurance to the gulf states will be important. any regional security arr angements will take into consideration the security of
the gulf states. >> are the gulf states confident america is therefore their security -- there for their security? >> the relations are long-established. we need to confirm it and build on it. >> that is a process that is underway. confirming and building. >> i really hope so. america very much once you to build an inclusive government. do you get that confirmation that that is what you want to do? you want a tolerant, inclusive, democratic government? i want something for history here.
i am an egyptian who loves all the egyptians. i am a person who loves all human beings. i wish the best for everybody. hope all the people would reciprocate the same feelings, internally or externally. this is a world of human beings, not the world of angels. i really hope that everybody will participate. the egyptians have to be satisfied about a what form the participation will be. >> are they satisfied? >> until now, no. >> no. that is your challenge.
are thei am saying is, egyptians satisfied to have the full spectrum on the political scene? this is one thing that is the call of one certain group. that needs to reconcile to make the egyptians feel that they are, this current is one part of the fabric and is working in the best interests. >> what group is that? >> the group we have been talking about. >> the muslim brotherhood. they have to do what? need is to stop
harming and hurting the egyptians. explosives and bomb electrical pylons and towers. when they cut in railways. when they harm people in the streets. when they commit terrorist activities. no jackson will be up to tolerate that. >> -- no egyptian will be able to tolerate that. >> thank you very much. >> thank you very much. ♪
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